Duane Doobie Jr’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working co-music editor, Duane Doobie Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared, trench broadcasters, including this week: Kid Kelly, vice president of music programming at SiriusXM; Todd Cavanah, golden-eared PD at CBS owned WJMK “K-Hits” & WBBM-FM in Chicago; John Marks, director of Country programming for SiriusXM; on-air personality Bayley Brown from WKLC-FM, St. Albans, West Virginia “Rock 105;” Golden-eared music director Karoline Kramer Gould (also known to her followers as Momma K) at WJCU 88.7 FM; Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9;” Jayn, golden-eared afternoon talent/music director/asst. program director at Alice 93.7, San Francisco; plus internet sensation The Iceman, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (8/12) includes such names as: Hailee Steinfeld, Shawn Mendes, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Ed Sheeran, Outasight, One Direction, Leon Bridges, The Heydaze, Lana Del Rey, The Wombats, Biters, Silversun Pickups, Halsey, Frank Turner, Don Henley, Martina McBride, Kacey Musgraves, Rick Monroe, Emma Lane, Jackie Lee, Clare Dunn, Memoryy, Skee Lo, San Holo, Kygo, Baio, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
PPM Analysis: Urban Contemporary. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the first of three format analyses based on Nielsen Audio July 2015 PPM data. Today’s focus is mainstream urban contemporary. Exactly half the stations on the urban contemporary panel (50%) are down June – July (6+), while 52% of the sample improves year-to-year. While approximately two of three qualifying urban contemporary facilities appear in the top ten (6+) of their respective markets in July, only Atlanta’s WVEE manages to finish first. View the entire report here.
Rdio Debuts Live Broadcast Radio. The global music streaming service begins with nearly 500 U.S. stations. Listeners can mark songs they like as a favorite, share the song, start a custom station based on the song or view more music by the artist. Paying subscribers to Rdio’s $3.99 and $9.99 plans can download songs for unlimited listening, add it to a custom playlist, listen to related songs from that artist or recently played songs on that station as often as they want. Rdio chief executive officer Anthony Bay comments, “We are committed to providing Rdio customers around the world with easy access to the audio content they want to hear through innovative features that enhance listening. Broadcast radio brands and talent continue to be the dominant tastemakers in music, so integrating live broadcast radio into Rdio’s critically acclaimed customer experience is an exciting development that we are thrilled to introduce.” Through a September 2013 partnership with Cumulus Media, Rdio has access to Cumulus’ programming and is promoted on Cumulus stations. Cumulus Media chief executive officer Lew Dickey states, “Bringing our national platform of stations to Rdio allows us to instantly create broader access for our listeners and new opportunities for advertisers to reach their target audiences. The combination of our premier broadcast assets with Rdio’s acclaimed user experience and music discovery features creates a full-service listening experience that is unparalleled.” In addition to music, live broadcast programming includes sports content from local stations as well as through Cumulus Media’s Westwood One. Featured stations include Cumulus Media-owned country WNSH, New York; rock KLOS, Los Angeles; triple-A KFOG, San Francisco; urban-rhythmic oldies WRWM, Indianapolis; and country WSM-FM, Nashville. Additional stations will launch later this year.
National Radio Hall of Fame Voting Starts Today. After a five-year hiatus, listeners again have the opportunity to participate in selecting National Radio Hall of Fame inductees. For the next two weeks (through Wednesday, 8/26), voters can text 36500 with their one vote for the four nominees (each) in the “Music Format On-Air Personality” and “Spoken Word On-Air Personality” categories. National Radio Hall of Fame chair Kraig Kitchin declares, “These eight personalities are beloved by their listeners. Giving the audience an opportunity to participate in the process of acknowledging their favorite hosts for their contributions over the years just makes sense.” Nominees and text info for the “Music Format On-Air Personality” are Delilah (text “DELILAH” to 36500); Elvis Duran (text “ELVIS” to 36500); Steve Harvey (text “STEVE” to 36500); and Ryan Seacrest (text “RYAN” to 36500). Nominees and text info for the “Spoken Word On-Air Personality” are Sean Hannity (text “HANNITY” to 36500); Clark Howard (text “CLARK” to 36500); Jim Rome (text “ROME” to 36500); and Dr. Laura Schlessinger (text “DR. LAURA” to 36500). Listener-chosen winners will be announced at the end of this month (8/31), and we cannot forget that all-important fine print that “message and data rates may apply.” In addition to the two listener-voting categories, four categories are being voted on by a panel of 400 industry professionals. The induction ceremony takes place November 5 at the Museum of Broadcast and Communications in downtown Chicago.
IAB Gears Up For Debut Podcast Upfront Showcase. The one-day marketplace for advertisers and media buyers to preview podcast programming will be held next month (9/10) in New York City. Scheduled to present at Interactive Advertising Bureau‘s inaugural podcast upfront showcase include representatives from AdLarge Media, Midroll, NPR, Panoply, Podtrac, and WNYC. Industry Initiatives, IAB vice president Carl Kalapesi explains, “More and more advertisers are incorporating audio programming into their digital marketing strategies. The individual and intimate listening experience enjoyed by podcast listeners provides a unique vehicle for brands to connect with consumers. IAB is excited to bring so many digital audio leaders together to discuss their upcoming programming and the wide array of advertising opportunities available through podcasts.” Invited executives will get to preview content developments from each presenting company in 20-minute segments.
Tyrell Joins “K-Jazz” Air Staff. Jazz vocalist Steve Tyrell is added to the on-air staff of California State University-Long Beach-owned KKJZ “K-Jazz America’s Jazz and Blues Station.” Tyrell’s eponymous three-hour weeknight program (6:00 pm – 9:00 pm) will begin in just over two weeks (8/31). Many U.S. astronauts have adopted his version of “On the Sunny Side of the Street” as their official song. All seven of 70-year-old Tyrell’s American standards albums have reached the top five on the jazz chart. He produced “That’s Life,” the debut album for Landau Eugene Murphy – the season six winner of “America’s Got Talent.” Also new to the “K-Jazz” lineup (and following Tyrell’s show) is a Bubba-Jackson-hosted bebop program.
Cassell (Posthumously) Wins SCBA Radio Personality of the Year Award. The “State Television And Radio” (STAR) awards of the South Carolina Broadcasting Association honor “exceptional accomplishments of the state’s stations and their broadcast professionals.” Entercom-owned talk WYRD-FM, Greenville-Spartanburg host Russ Cassell (left), who passed away last year, won the “Radio Personality of the Year” award. Entercom market vice president and general manager Steve Sinicropi declares, “The broadcasting legacy of Russ Cassell lives on; our entire team is grateful for the SCBA recognizing Russ with this important award.” The cluster’s production director Stan Fisher received STAR recognition for best production-multi spot campaign on rock WTPT “93.3 The Planet” for local attorney Rob Ianuario. In the station’s first year in the format, WYRD-AM “ESPN Upstate” sports broadcaster Greg McKinney was recognized with a “Sportscaster of the Year award of merit at the event, which was held in Columbia, South Carolina over the weekend.
McCollim Heads to Colorado Springs as iHeartMedia’s Senior VP/Programming. Transferring from Spokane where he programmed iHeartMedia talker KQNT and KKZX “The Classic Rock Station,” Jason McCollim is appointed senior vice president of programming for the company’s Colorado Springs and Pueblo stations. Senior vice president of programming/regional markets Tony Coles states, “McCollim is one of our rising stars. He has done an incredible job for us in Spokane. His leadership skills and passion for programming will allow him to ramp up quickly and build immediate relationships with the programming and sales teams.” Colorado-Pueblo market president Darci Ewell comments, “Jason’s proven track record in Spokane and his versatile experience will make him an incredible asset to the Colorado Springs-Pueblo cluster. Jason brings a high level of energy and creativity that will greatly benefit our team.” McCollim remarks, “I am very excited about working with the fantastic iHeartMedia team in both Colorado Springs and Pueblo; thanks to Tony Coles and Darci Ewell for the opportunity to work in one of the most beautiful parts of our country.” McCollim spent more than 14 years at KQNT and KKZX; he is vice president of the Inland Empire Bloodhounds Search & Rescue. The Colorado Springs stations he will oversee are rhythmic CHR KIBT “The Beat”; hot AC KVUU “My-99.9”; adult contemporary KKLI “Sunny 106.3”; country KCCY “Y-96.9; and classic rock KDZA “Z-107.9.” The three Pueblo facilities are classic hits KPHT; KCCY “Fox Sports 1350″; and talk KCSJ.
Update: Scott McKenzie. It was just this past Monday (8/10) that RadioInfo reported that – after an approximately seven-year battle against non-Hodgkins cancer – CBS Radio Orlando hot AC WOMX “Mix 105.1″ morning personality Scott McKenzie had made his “final” healthcare arrangements. McKenzie yesterday (Tuesday) lost that fight and passed away at the age of 59. His death was announced on his Facebook page. Among those commenting is CBS Radio News correspondent Peter King, who notes, “Scott is the epitome of an iconic radio personality who embraced his community and vice versa; a great talent, a great person who has enriched so many lives through good deeds and laughter.” Just prior to his death, McKenzie addressed listeners by posting on the station website, “Your constant love and support has gotten us through so much during this cancer battle. Knowing you have been by our side has been sincerely appreciated by my family on a daily basis. Most of all, thank you for the privilege of waking you up all these years. I am so grateful to call you my Orlando family.” It was his “dream to be able to make it back in the studio with the other corny goofballs for a brief goodbye, and to hold down that microphone ‘on’ switch one more time.” It, however, did not happen. Columbus-born/Ohio University graduate McKenzie previously worked at stations in Boston, Columbus, and Tallahassee. He had been with “Mix” for nearly 25 years and today’s 6:00 am – 10:00 show on “Mix” will be a tribute to him. His wife, daughter, and parents are among his survivors. Funeral services will be tomorrow (Thursday) at 10:30 am at Congregation Ohev Shalom in suburban Orlando (Maitland).
Maranville Departs USA Radio Networks. One-year USA Radio Networks chief content officer-director of channel development Tim Maranville exits. He expresses thanks to “everyone at USA for all the hard work, especially show hosts Steve Deace, Kevin Jackson, Steve Noble, Jim Sharpe, Joe Messina, Chris and Emilee, Angie Austin, and Tony Perkins. The future is bright and I hope to have one, maybe two, announcements about my next contribution to the planet by mid-September.” Maranville joined USA after a nearly six-year run as vice president of programming at Westwood One. He previously was vice president and director of operations of the Denver Radio Company; vice president and director of operations of Sun City Communications; director of operations at KFRC, San Francisco; and director of operations of Phoenix stations KMLE, KOOL, and KZON. In addition, he owns/operates Mutations Media and he co-owns The Show Must Go On, an independent syndication consulting and affiliation company.
Historic Pop Media Figure Elliot Mintz Interviewed on Podcast One’s “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.” One of the most complex and challenging processes in all of radio is the art of the interview. We hear interviews all the time – but how many of them are really good? How many of them bring the listener true insights into the mind and knowledge of the person being interviewed? How many truly represent the interests of the listener without ambushing or disrespecting the human dignity (or appropriate privacy) of the person being interviewed? Should an interview be a series of hard ball questions? Should it be conversational? Should it be confrontational? Should it be to promote a product? These are questions that any good interviewer faces every time they enter a public dance of dialogue with another human being… “Am I an adversary, an advocate or something in between?” The new installment of the hit weekly podcast geared to media freaks around the world, “Up Close and Far Out,” presents an interviewer (Michael Harrison) interviewing an interviewer (Elliot Mintz). Mintz was one of the original pioneers of FM rock radio back in the 60s – only he wasn’t a DJ, he was an interviewer – thus, he is also somewhat of a pioneering talk show host. Throughout the sixties and seventies, he became widely respected for the quality and prolific body of work (more than 2000 interviews) with the most famous and respected pop stars in the world of music, the performing arts, science and philosophy. In the 80s, he reinvented himself and became a consultant, advisor and publicist to some of the biggest names in the business including the John Lennon estate and a slew of others. He can truly be called a consummate show business insider and a legend in his own right. Now, Elliot Mintz has done something extraordinary. He spent more than a year of diligent detail work assembling his archives, that were packed away in fading and often unmarked boxes, into a museum-like website where the visitor can experience, at no cost, more than 150 hours of audio and video treasures culled from his encounters with some of the most fascinating characters of the 20th and early 21st centuries. It is www.ElliotMintz.com. To listen to the entire conversation between Michael Harrison and Elliot Mintz, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column of every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.
Cumulus Dives into Digital Audio as Partner in Rdio. Cumulus Media enters in to a partnership with Pulsar Media, parent company of three-year-old digital music service Rdio. The companies say in a press release the deal involves a “powerful content, promotion and advertising partnership that provides listeners with a one-stop solution for their audio needs while offering advertisers new opportunities to engage with consumers.” The strategic partnership will provide Cumulus with a financial interest in the larger digital music ecosystem and allows Rdio to launch free, ad-supported products in the United States while accelerating the activation of new users and subscribers. Cumulus will obtain a significant equity stake in Pulser Media, Rdio’s parent company, in exchange for exclusive content, media and on-air promotional commitments over a five year period. In addition, Rdio will leverage the Cumulus sales infrastructure to monetize its upcoming ad-supported free products, including music on-demand, custom playlists and exclusive content curated by Cumulus. Rdio is the digital music service founded by the co-creator of Skype that is currently available in over 30 countries. Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey says, “This partnership leverages our premier broadcast and content assets along with Rdio’s acclaimed digital audio platform — enabling consumers to listen to whatever they want, whenever they want, however they want.” Rdio CEO Drew Larner adds, “We are thrilled to be partnering with Cumulus and their robust network of radio stations and premium content. This monumental deal is the first time a digital and a broadcast platform have come together in this way and we’re eager to bring the Rdio experience to the greater Cumulus listening audience.”
Jerry Sharell Stable After Being Held Hostage, Stabbed. The Los Angeles radio and music communities remain stunned this morning following news that broke last night involving former five-year (1987 – 1992) Westwood One senior vice president of talent marketing Jerry Sharell, who was reportedly held hostage and attacked in Woodland Hills (San Fernando Valley – Los Angeles). Sharell was with his girlfriend when her ex-husband was said to have arrived with flowers and a machete at approximately 8:00 am yesterday (Sunday, 9/15). He apparently held the couple hostage for more than three hours. “Sometime during that time, [Sharell] had been stabbed repeatedly,” Los Angeles Police Department sergeant Jeff Nuttal told KABC-TV, Los Angeles. The woman was injured when she tried to halt the attack, but was able to escape and called authorities. Police say that owing to a history of domestic violence, she had a restraining order against her ex-husband. Sharell, who hosts “Sundays with Sinatra” on Los Angeles public outlet KKJZ “KJazz” – is in critical, but stable condition at Northridge Medical Center with injuries to his head and neck. The unidentified attacker turned the weapon on himself; his condition is listed as critical as well but both he and Sharell are expected to survive. The alleged attacker is in police custody at the hospital. Sharell was co-executive producer of Ronnie Milsap‘s 2004 Grammy-nominated “Just for a Thrill” album. He began his career as a Mercury Records promotion rep, before joining Main Line Distributors in 1962. Sharell held executive positions at Buddah Records and A&M Records. He has helped the careers of artists such as Herb Alpert, Jackson Browne, Carpenters, Cars, Joe Cocker, Eagles, Curtis Mayfield, Joni Mitchell, Queen, Linda Ronstadt, and Carly Simon. He is past president of City of Hope, Entertainment Division, and is on the advisory board of MusiCares. From 2002 – 2010, he was president/CEO for the non-profit Society of Singers. Sharell’s wife of 48 years, Joanne, recently died after losing her fight against cancer.
Duane Doobie Comments on the Dangers of “Baggage” that we Accumulate Along the Road of Life. Shocked by today’s tragic story about the knife assault on industry veteran Jerry Sharell, RadioInfo music editor/director Duane Doobie pens a compelling observation about the social and family complications “adults” face as we get older. He also writes about something far more positive – exciting new music worthy of the attention of radio programmers. To read the Doob’s latest, click here.
Jack Diamond Named AM Drive Host at ‘Lite FM’ in Miami; Julie Guy Joins as Co-Host. Lincoln Financial Media announces veteran broadcast personality Jack Diamond is host of the new morning drive program on the company’s AC WLYF, Miami “101.5 LITE FM” with Julie Guy to work as his co-host. He succeeds Ellen Jaffe who moves to anchoring afternoon drive. Diamond comes to “LITE FM” following nearly 24 years of success at WRQX, Washington. Director of programming and operations Rob Sidney states, “Jack Diamond is a master entertainer, engaging each listener over-the-air, in person and through all forms of interactive media. His experience, showmanship and passion reflect the best of what ‘LITE FM’ has built over four decades. And I’m thrilled to have Jack kicking off LITE’s next era of success.” Julie Guy has spent more than two decades at top-ranked contemporary music stations in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. For the past 11 years, she anchored “Those Two Girls in the Morning” at Cox Media Group’s crosstown WFLC. Sidney states, “We’ve long admired Julie Guy’s ability to entertain and relate to her listeners. She’s been a formidable competitor and we’re much happier to welcome her enthusiasm and talent to the team at ‘LITE FM.’”
Tyler Reese New PM Drive Host at WSIX, Nashville. In addition to hosting the afternoon show at Clear Channel’s country WSIX, Nashville “The Big 98,” Tyler Reese will also serve as assistant program director and music director. He comes to Nashville from the company’s country WKKT, Charlotte “Kat Country” where he was music director and evening personality. Reese takes over for Anthony Allen (a.k.a. Ant Man), who jumped to CC’s country KNIX, Phoenix where is APD/MD. WSIX PD Michael Bryan states, “We’re very excited to add Tyler to our tremendous team at ‘The Big 98’ — he is simply the perfect fit. His extreme passion for country music, strong Nashville relationships and ability to connect with an audience has earned him this very coveted position. ‘The Big 98’ just got bigger, again.”
Clear Channel Adds Former VEVO Exec to Corporate Staff. Clear Channel Media and Entertainment names Derrin Woodhouse to national entertainment director for national programming platforms position. In this newly created position, Woodhouse will assist with the planning and executing of the company’s events, including the iHeartRadio Music Festival, Pool Party, Album Release Parties, B2B events and more. He will be based New York City and will report to Darren Pfeffer. Most recently, Woodhouse was director of marketing & strategic partnerships at VEVO where he created and produced hundreds of events.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Melissa Moore will fill the vacant midday slot at Lincoln Financial Media’s country KYGO, Denver beginning October 1. Moore comes from Way Media where she was the afternoon drive talent for the religious broadcaster’s 100 affiliates…..Ric Knight is doing double duty for Columbus Radio Group’s AC WSNY, Columbus, Ohio where he’ll host PM drive on “Sunny 95” and handle morning drive on the company’s classic hits WNND “Rewind 103.5 and 104.3.”…..Bend Radio Group moves Lola Montgomery from the morning show at AC KMGX, Bend, Oregon “The New Mix 100.7” to the company’s country sister KSJJ “Country 103” where she’ll host the midday show.
CHRIS PENDL: Help Your Best Clients Thrive in Local Searches. Bonneville Seattle creative director Chris Pendl writes that some of radio’s best advertisers can be the most difficult to find when it comes to mobile-based local searches. What’s more, there can be a huge difference between how one of your clients rates on a desktop search and where they rate – if at all – on a mobile search. Pendl notes, “With smartphone ownership now 56% among American adults, searching on smartphones is increasingly becoming a part of the consumer’s journey before making a purchase. A recent local search study, revealed there’s an 87% increase in local searches via mobile apps. It is in this mobile space where some of radio’s best advertisers, local and regional businesses, have poor visibility and are often non-existent.” Pendl offers simple solutions to help your valuable advertisers appear where they should in mobile searches. Read his column here.
CBS Radio Partners with BBR Music Group for ‘Triple 7s’ Promotion. The contest begins today as CBS Radio teams with BBR Music Group to offer the grand prize winner and a guest the opportunity to see “7 shows in 7 nights in 7 cities.” CBS Radio’s country stations are launching a national multi-market promotion which will drive listeners to Radio.com to enter-to-win their way onto a private jet for a week-long, music-jammed journey around the U.S. to see seven shows during seven back-to-back nights in seven different cities. The grand prize winner, along with his or her guest, will also have the opportunity to meet each artist. The contest winner’s jet setting, whirlwind week includes: Stop #1: Rachel Farley — 10/21 in Nashville; Stop #2: Parmalee — 10/22 in Asheville, NC; Stop #3: Randy Houser — 10/23 in Charleston, SC; Stop #4: Jason Aldean — 10/24 in Memphis; Stop #5: Thompson Square — 10/25 in Tampa; Stop #6: Dustin Lynch — 10/26 in Bossier City, Losuisiana; and Stop #7: Joe Nichols — 10/27 in New Orleans. The contest is airing on CBS stations: KFRG, Riverside; KILT, Houston; KMLE, Phoenix; KMNB, Minneapolis; KMPS, Seattle; KNCI, Sacramento; WDSY, Pittsburgh; WQYK, Tampa; WSOC, Charlotte; WUSN, Chicago; and WYCD, Detroit.
Clear Channel Adds ‘ON with Mario Lopez’ to Hot AC ‘Star 94.1 San Diego.’ The Premiere Networks-syndicated Mario Lopez is added to the evening slot at Clear Channel’s hot AC KMYI “Star 94.1” airing from 8:00 pm to 12:00 midnight. The “ON with Mario Lopez” show – hosted by the star of TV’s “Extra” – is music intensive with a heavy dose of entertainment stories and celebrity news.
Cumulus Media Flips WRQQ, Baton Rouge to Classic Hits. Cumulus Media’s WRQQ, Baton Rouge will go commercial free for the next two weeks as it flips from adult hits to classic hits and takes on the brand “Classic Hits 103.3.” In a statement, the company says the station will feature artists including “Elton John, Journey, Fleetwood Mac, Heart, Foreigner, The Doobie Brothers, Steve Miller Band, The Beatles, Steely Dan, The Rolling Stones, John Mellencamp, Santana, James Taylor, Chicago, Bruce Springsteen and many more!”